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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues

Shared Economic Prosperity

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The sixth annual conference will convene thought leaders from academics, industry and government to debate the most challenging current issues in the field of entrepreneurship and set the agenda for future research and policy.

North Carolina has been a relatively affordable place to live, but the housing climate is shifting as industry booms. Join us for several interactive virtual sessions as industry leaders explore how the Triangle can prepare for the future.

While the gender pay gap has received significant attention in recent years, little progress has been made to close it; in fact, in 2019, women still earned only 82 cents for every dollar received by their male counterparts for equal work. Policymakers in recent years have developed creative solutions aiming to close the gap, including bans prohibiting employers from asking for a job applicant’s salary history. However, in this week’s Kenan Insight, new research from our experts examines whether such well-intentioned bans are inadvertently lowering wages for all employees.

As the pandemic forced shutdowns across the globe, U.S. government entities at the federal, state and local levels worked swiftly to secure known drivers of economic growth and job creation – including entrepreneurial ecosystems and small businesses. And while the programs implemented were widely lauded as successful, the story of who benefitted – and who did not – is more complex. This week’s Kenan Insight explores our experts’ key findings around the roles of policy and implementation in supporting equal access to opportunity.

Christian Lundblad, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Professor of Finance and Kenan Institute Director of Research, joined WRAL's Debra Morgan to discuss the state's uneven economic recovery due to employee fear of being exposed to coronavirus. Lundblad said business vaccine mandates will help alleviate those fears and draw more people back to work.

While economists have long theorized that wealthier individuals may purchase less life and property insurance because they can rely on their savings if something unexpected happens, a new study of more than 63,000 people shows that, in practice, quite the opposite is true. This week’s Kenan Insight offers a chance for our experts to explore the findings of their new study, which suggest disparities in insurance coverage could help explain and exacerbate existing financial inequalities.

As of 2019, salary history bans have been enacted by 17 states and Puerto Rico with the stated purpose of reducing the gender pay gap. We argue that salary history bans may negatively affect wages as employers lose an informative signal of worker productivity. We empirically evaluate these laws using a large panel dataset of disaggregated wages covering all public sector employees in 36 states and find, on average, salary history bans lead to a 3% decrease in new hire wages. We find no decrease in the gender pay gap in the full sample and a modest 1.5% increase in the relative wages of women, as compared to men, among new hires most likely to have experienced gender discrimination historically.

The CREATE center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in partnership with the AOM Technology and Innovation Management (TIM) division, is pleased to organize the “Emergence: Organizations, Markets, Platforms, and Regions” conference. The conference seeks to unpack the processes of emergence and re-emergence that are core to creating prosperous economies.

Seven powerful demographic trends—analogous to gale force wind gusts in an adverse weather event—constitute potentially powerful disruptors of business and commerce in the years ahead. Four of the gale force demographic disruptors—slowing total and foreign-born population growth, white population loss, and declining fertility— have evolved over the past several decades.

The North Carolina Community Action Association (NCCAA) commissioned a study to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on its efforts to combat poverty and facilitate self-sufficiency in low-income communities throughout the state. We conducted focus groups with individuals served by Community Action Agencies (CAAs) and conducted a corresponding set of key informant interviews with identified leaders in five communities across the state. The research focused on five themes. We generated eight key takeaways from our content analysis of the focus group transcripts and nine key takeaways from our content analysis of the transcripts emanating from our Zoom sessions with community key informants.

While the COVID-19 pandemic was devastating for many, research shows its impact was not felt equally. Black Americans experienced disproportionate health and economic ramifications, which compounded the financial, social and psychological strain many felt pre-pandemic, and have contributed to growing inter-generational wealth disparities. In today’s Kenan Insight, our experts explore whether the multi-trillion dollar “Build Back Better” plan proposed by the Biden administration holds the potential to begin closing pervasive gaps in American society.

Our Shared Economic Prosperity Experts

Jeanne Milliken Bonds

Professor of the Practice, Impact Investment and Sustainable Finance, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

    Anusha Chari

    Professor of Economics, UNC-Chapel Hill, and Professor of Finance, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

      Maryann P. Feldman

      S.K. Heninger Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and Professor of FinanceFaculty Director of CREATE

      Andra Ghent

      Associate Professor of Finance, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

      Olga Hawn

      Assistant Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Sustainability Distinguished Fellow and Faculty Director of the Center for Sustainable Enterprise

      Jim Johnson

      William R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Director of the Urban Investment Strategies Center 

      Mark Little

      Executive Director, CREATE

      Jeff Mittelstadt

      Executive Director, Center for Sustainable Enterprise
      Professor of the Practice, Strategy and Entrepreneurship

      Paige Ouimet

      Professor of Finance, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School